RSS

Tag Archives: real estate

Real Estate Today 9-20-2012


10 best states for first-time homebuyer help
MSN Real Estate | September 2012
Achieving the American dream has long been associated with owning a home. Yet for many of today’s would-be homebuyers, economic uncertainty has called that dream into question.  (OK experts, here is your chance to shine!  What great programs do we have available to first-time homebuyers in the Northwest? ~Anthony)

Some Markets See Inventories Cut Nearly in Half
RealtorMag | September 19, 2012
The number of homes for sale in the last year is falling the most in California, with eight of the top 10 biggest drops in inventories in the last year from metro areas in the Golden State. Many California metros are also seeing asking prices on the rise in the last year, too. (One NW area metro makes the list – which one is it?)

U.S. Banks on High Alert for Cyberattacks
Columbus Dispatch | September 19, 2012
A financial-services industry group warned banks yesterday to be on heightened alert for cyberattacks after Bank of America Corp. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. experienced unexplained outages on their public websites.

U.S. May Have Paid $1B in False Claims
The Washington Post | September 19, 2012
Report finds HUD may have paid hundreds of millions of dollars in mortgage aid to homeowners who did not qualify for the help.

Housing Recovery Nuanced at the Local Level
The Wall Street Journal | September 19, 2012
Today’s existing-home sales numbers from the National Association of Realtors, paired with today’s Census data on housing starts and a boost in builder confidence from earlier this week, paint a picture of housing on the mend.

Meet the New Boss: Big Data
The Wall Street Journal | September 20, 2012
At more and more companies, the hiring boss is an algorithm, as jobs that were once filled on the basis of work history and interviews are left to personality tests and data analysis.

Incomes Fell or Stagnated Last Year
The Wall Street Journal | September 19, 2012
The income of the typical U.S. family fell or was flat in almost every state last year, with the drop particularly steep in places where the economy has been hit hard by the housing bust.

Real Estate Investors Plan to Purchase More Homes in U.S.
BusinessWeek | September 20, 2012
Almost two-thirds of U.S. residential real estate investors plan to buy as many as or more homes in the next 12 months than they have in the past year even as prices rise, according to a survey released today.  

Like1     Join My List

Today I’d like to hear from real estate investors (or their agents):  What sectors provide the best opportunities?  What advice do you have for a prospective first-time investor?  What your personal market outlook for investment real estate?  (Both residential real estate and commercial real estate) 

  

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on September 20, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Real Estate Today 9-10-2012


Last week we talked about the Spokane Valley home that was vandalized as it sat vacant.  We received some excellent feedback from readers about how to better secure a listing from vandalism.  Check it out!

Real Estate Advice to Sellers from The Pros

Stewart Title Spokane Facebook Page                   Real Estate Today

Deal to Avert U.S. Fiscal Cliff Could Start With Alternate Tax
Bloomberg | September 10, 2012
An expansion in the reach of the alternative minimum tax is the element of the U.S. fiscal cliff with the largest immediate effect on taxpayers and the most bipartisan appetite for a solution, creating the possibility that lawmakers could use it to propel Congress toward a deal.

Investors Cash-in on Land Deals as U.S. Housing Picks Up
Reuters | September 10, 2012
From the outskirts of Las Vegas to the coast of California, stretches of undeveloped land in some of the most depressed housing markets in the U.S. are in high demand.

Housing on Mend, but Full Recovery Is Far Off
The Wall Street Journal | September 9, 2012
Home prices during the first half of 2012 posted their strongest gains in six years, the clearest sign that more U.S. housing markets have hit bottom.

Are Short Sales Really That Bad?
FICO Banking Analytics | September 7, 2012
Critics assert that since short sales do not cost the bank as much money as foreclosures, the penalty to a credit score should be less, commensurate with the financial impact on a lender.

Breaking the Home-Buying Habit
The Wall Street Journal | September 7, 2012
Just how many cheap homes should an investor buy?

Let’s Not Get Carried Away with Home Price Increases
The KCM Blog | September 10, 2012
There has been a lot of excitement about home prices over the last few months. Though we agree that the housing industry is in a full out recovery, we also believe that there will still be price volatility over the next several months. We must realize home sales are seasonal and that fact impacts prices.

Multifamily Market Posts Strong Gains
RealtorMag | September 7, 2012
In the second quarter of this year, the apartment and condo market reached their highest levels since the second quarter of 2005, according to the Multifamily Production Index, released by the National Association of Home Builders.

Here’s the Dirt: Housing projects sprout in CdA
The Spokesman-Review | September 9, 2012
Multifamily housing projects continue to be popular in Coeur d’Alene, with developers proposing two new complexes with a total of 160 units.

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on September 10, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

Tags: , , , , ,

Real Estate Today 8-30-2012


Stewart Title Spokane Facebook Page

Will Housing Lead A U.S. Recovery?
Forbes | August 27, 2012
The residential real estate market appears to have been one of the few encouraging areas within the U.S. economy during the second quarter.

‘The Economy Stole My Retirement’
The Wall Street Journal | August 29, 2012
The uncertain economy has left millions of small-business owners in their 60s and 70s unable to retire and forced to hang on for a recovery that economists say could still be a long way off.

The Housing Recovery Is Looking Better and Better
The Wall Street Journal | August 30, 2012
One of the biggest economic stories this summer has been the gradual improvement in the battered housing market. Wednesday’s data further reinforces that point.

Fewer Americans are Late on Mortgage Payments: Fed Bank of New York
HousingWire | August 29, 2012
Fewer Americans fell behind on their mortgages, credit cards and auto loans in the second quarter of 2012, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said in its Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit.

Housing Market Improvements Lessen Consumer Distress
The New York Times | August 30, 2012
Improvement in the nation’s housing markets has helped ease consumer financial woes, according to a quarterly report from a large credit counseling agency.

U.S. Pending Home Sales Highest Since April 2010
The Wall Street Journal | August 29, 2012
The number of U.S. home buyers who signed contracts to purchase previously owned homes rose last month to the highest level in more than two years, the latest sign of a strengthening housing market. (Was April 2010 at about the peak of the tax credit bump, or was that later for pending home sales? ~Anthony)

Baby Boomers About to Bust Out of Homes
The KCM Blog | August 30, 2012
There is little doubt that the baby boomer generation has had a major impact on the housing market as they proceed through the different stages of their lives. And they are about to go through the next stage – retirement. The opportunity that this next transition will create will be enormous. Let’s take a look.

Silicon Valley’s Boom Creates Shortage of $1 Million Homes
CNBC | August 29, 2012
The capital of high tech is now the capital of high-priced real estate.

Keep the responses coming and we’ll use them when we can!

Reader response to the article 2 must-have contingencies in a home purchase offer:
“In addition to that, the water should be tested and the septic (if there is one) should be both pumped and inspected.  Also:  If it is a rural or large lot — especially older property — there should be a boundary line survey if the property corner points cannot be located.  My verbiage goes something like this: “Seller shall locate & clearly mark the property points.  If points cannot be identified and a new pin must be placed, then seller will order and pay for both the survey and the re-recording of that survey prior to closing.”  Several times I have discovered, on behalf of my clients, that fence lines or barns are not on the property.“

Join My List

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 30, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

Tags: , , , , ,

Real Estate Today 8-28-2012


Like1

Lots of great information brought to you by the humble crew at Stewart Title of Spokane.  The distressed home market is trending down, the apartment boom may be ending, and check out the two good homebuyer articles at the bottom.  Plus today you get bonus reader feedback!  Thanks for reading and feel free to forward to a friend.

Return of the Jumbo Mortgage
The Wall Street Journal | August 27, 2012
For home buyers eager to snap up luxury homes at low interest rates, lenders are bringing back the supersized loan.

Why Home Prices Are Rising: The ‘Distressed Share’
The Wall Street Journal | August 27, 2012
Tuesday’s measure of June home prices from the S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city index is likely to turn positive when compared with one year ago for the first time in two years, according to a forecast by Zillow Inc. (The S&P Case-Shiller did in fact turn positive, see S&P Case-Shiller: Home prices up across the board ~Anthony)

Consolidation of Small Banks on Rise
The Washington Post | August 27, 2012
Shrinking profit margins, tepid loan demand and low interest rates are placing pressure on small and medium-sized banks to merge. (This it true, but sad to see.  We need both the large and the small to serve all sectors.  Consider this quote from the article: “Whereas large national banks have little trouble hiring more accountants and lawyers to manage compliance with new regulations, community banks find it difficult to absorb those costs.” While we are in a recovery, that doesn’t mean it’s a recovery for all.  Still rough seas out there. ~Anthony)

California Enacts Law to Levy Heavy Fines for Blight
HousingWire | August 27, 2012
California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill Monday forcing owners of foreclosed and vacant homes to maintain the property or face up to a $1,000 fine per day of violation.

Trulia vs. Zillow: The Battle for Online Real Estate
CNBC | August 27, 2012
Trulia is the latest website daring the public to buy its shares, hoping to raise $75 million in the very competitive world of real estate listings.

As Housing Recovers, Will Apartment Boom End?
CNBC | August 27, 2012
The latest reports on new and existing home sales seem to indicate that the housing market is beginning to find its footing again. While most believe the recovery will be slow, U-shaped, and bumpy, the free fall appears to be over for both sales and prices.

Homebuyers: Do you know what you are buying?
Real Estate Settlement Observer | August 27, 2012
While this would seem to be obvious, purchasers should pay close attention to exactly what they are buying.  I am not referring to inspection issues, I am referring to something that seems obvious, but does occasionally come up as a problem. Here are some real scenarios where an individual bought something that was not exactly what they were expecting. (Worth noting: The author is in the East Coast market and mentions the buyer getting a location survey.  We don’t get many home buyers in Spokane wanting to pay for a location survey but it’s not a bad idea. All solid advice here. ~Anthony)

Top 5 homebuyer regrets
Inman News | August 27, 2012
In life, and in real estate, there are decisions that, if we had them to do over again, we might do x, y or z differently. But all in all, we are not too upset about how things turned out. “C’est la vie,” as they say.

Feedback from a local mortgage broker on yesterday’s edition:

Survey article about disclosure and privacy – It is IMPOSSIBLE to provide an accurate quote to an online request.  Yes, I know plenty of online lenders keep providing quote forms and replies but that’s solely a marketing gimmick. Consumers demand online and anonymous (the privacy issue) quotes but it’s not possible.  Even with a full loan application and credit report it is sometimes difficult to provide an accurate quote. 

The truth? We can provide 100% guarantee on the FEES involved with a transaction because those don’t change (per law) – but there is FULL flexibility in rate and points until such time as the loan is locked. And that doesn’t happen until full application. 

So the trouble consumers get themselves into is relying upon the low fee, low rate quote from Zillow or other online lead generator and then the rate changes once the application is submitted and approved.  That rate change often times far outweighs any fee differential between two lenders. 

Truth – consumers can’t get a valid and accurate quote unless they have made a full loan application and paid for the credit report. And that’s the law.  And the process of applying is so painful that it’s rare anyone does fully apply at more than one lender.

Join My List

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 28, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Real Estate Today 8-23-2012


Like1

You’ll find some great reading this morning including Ted Jones’ view of real estate investing in college towns, a couple of good articles on the effect of short sales on home prices and the overall market, and a warning on the coming fiscal cliff from the Washington Post.  The article that most surprised me?  Fannie Mae REOs not getting to market. 

Fannie and Freddie Short Sale Change; LO-Realtor Comments; Specified Pool Primer
Mortgage News Daily | August 22, 2012
Statistics can be useful, sometimes not. On the “useful” side, the MBA will release its weekly mortgage applications index for the prior week. But how many of those retail applications actually close?

College Towns for Investing
Ted C. Jones Blog | August 23, 2012
With an estimated 14.4 million college students, University and College towns are fertile rental markets. But with the housing bubble and the lowest interest rates in 50 years, investing in rental housing in these locales can be lucrative.

New FHFA Short Sale Cap May Equal Big Losses on Some Second Liens
HousingWire | August 22, 2012
The new $6,000 limit Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage servicers will be allowed to pay out to second-lien holders is on par with some values but well below others.

CBO: Recession Likely if ‘Fiscal Cliff’ not Averted
The Washington Post | August 22, 2012
The U.S. economy is hurtling toward a recession if Congress fails to avert a series of tax hikes and budget cuts by January, the Congressional Budget Office said, warning that a fiscal impasse would have consequences even more dire than previously forecast.

Will Short Sales Hit Home Prices?
The Wall Street Journal | August 22, 2012
A new relief program for distressed homeowners may have unintended consequences.

Analysis: Investors Driving Recovery as Activity Surges
DSNews.com | August 22, 2012
A recent analysis from John Burns Real Estate Consulting suggests that investors may be the biggest driving force in the housing recovery.

Nearly half of Fannie Mae REO unable to reach market
HousingWire | August 22, 2012
Only half of the previously foreclosed homes owned by Fannie Mae are either on the market or being prepared for sale. The remaining properties are currently locked away in some step of the foreclosure system.
‘Luxury’ Foreclosures Soar
RealtorMag | August 22, 2012
For the past two years, foreclosure activity has been increasing on higher-end homes at a faster pace than lower-end homes, says Daren Blomquist with RealtyTrac, a company that tracks foreclosure housing data.

Based on the lead article (second paragraph), I have a reader who asks: Do real estate agent readers feel that 40% of their contracts do not close?  If it’s not 40%, what is the number?  What about lenders and
purchase applications vs. refi applications? (In the just for fun category,
I also enjoyed the very first paragraph of that same article.  It made me smile. ~Anthony)

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 23, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Real Estate Today 8-21-2012


The real estate today news for 8-21-2012 is out provided by Stewart Title Spokane! Like us on Facebook to keep up to date with the daily news.
Spokane Title Insurance Facebook

RE/MAX: Inventory Poses Biggest Threat to ‘Year of Recovery’
DSNews | August 20, 2012
Looks like the dragon will have to step aside: 2012 is now “The Year of the Housing Recovery,” according to RE/MAX.

HomeGain: Home Sellers More Successful With Real Estate Agent
HousingWire | August 20, 2012
Some homeowners may have a strong preference for selling their own properties, but a new poll by HomeGain suggests having a real estate agents improves a person’s odds of offloading their home.

Expectation for Prices to Rise Deters Would-Be Sellers: Survey
DSNews | August 20, 2012
After surveying more than 1,800 active home sellers, Redfin found that some of its customers are holding back from selling now because they believe patience will pay off in the form of higher offers for their home.

Going in Circles: The Merry-Go-Round Economy
The Wall Street Journal | August 21, 2012
Since the recession ended three years ago, the U.S. economy has felt at times like a roller coaster, ready one moment to fly off into full-blown recovery, then taking a sudden, gut-wrenching plunge back toward recession.

New Jersey looks to speed foreclosures on abandoned homes
HousingWire | August 20, 2012
A New Jersey state senate bill that would allow financial firms to expedite the foreclosure process on abandoned, vacant homes is advancing after making it out of committee. (This seems to me like it could be a great idea, as long as it’s uncontested and vacant. Your thoughts? ~Anthony)

Exclusive: New Bill Brings Better Housing Benefits for Veterans
DSNews.com | August 20, 2012
While the bill, passed by the House and unanimously by the Senate, has a primary focus to extend healthcare to those affected by Camp Lejeune’s drinking water, it also makes breakthrough changes that provide much needed reform to the VA Loan program, a program that has been in service since 1944.

Housing Update from Ashley Garner
The KCM Blog | August 21, 2012
The good news is the recovery of the Real Estate Market is unfolding exactly as it should and exactly as we have predicted.

The Spokane Association of Realtors Annual “Fill the Fridge” Food Drive is coming up (Sept. 6-7) to benefit Second Harvest.  Check out the SAR Food Drive Map showing the Albertsons locations and the store captains.  Volunteer now to fill a shift, or Second Harvest always accepts cash donations.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 21, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Real Estate Today 8-8-2012


Are you on Facebook?  We’re having a little Facebook competition based on number of LIKES on our office Facebook page.  Please take a minute and LIKE our Facebook page to tell the world how amazing you think Stewart Title of Spokane is!
Like1

Recovery or Not, Home Prices Keep Rising
The Wall Street Journal | August 7, 2012
CoreLogic, a real-estate data provider, weighed in with its view of what’s happening with home prices. According to the firm, prices are up 2.5% in June.

U.S. Mortgage Application Volume Down 1.8%
The Wall Street Journal | August 8, 2012
The number of total mortgage applications filed in the U.S. last week slipped 1.8% as interest rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages crept higher, the Mortgage Bankers Association said Wednesday.

Is the Fed Eyeing a Housing Solution?
The Wall Street Journal | August 7, 2012
So, another big bond-buying program, a so-called QE3, might be the Fed’s way of riding that pony, pushing the housing market, and hoping that gooses the economy.

Record One-third of GSE Refinances Close Via HARP
HousingWire | August 7, 2012
One of every three refinances through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac closed via the Home Affordable Refinance Program, the highest number since the program’s inception in April 2009.

Small Banks Dislike Rules
The Wall Street Journal | August 7, 2012
Executives at many small banks complain that Basel III could force them to cut back on lending, and they have been blunt in their criticism of the new rules.

Freddie Mac Posts $1.2B Net Income
The Washington Post | August 7, 2012
The government-controlled mortgage giant isn’t requesting any additional federal aid for the period.

Harder-Luck Foreclosures Grow as Funding for Help Wanes
BusinessWeek | August 7, 2012
Larrone Brown has been dodging foreclosure since losing his job in December 2010. He has twice been denied a mortgage modification and says he expects a foreclosure notice any day.

MetLife Fined by Fed Ahead of Exit From Banking
BusinessWeek | August 7, 2012
MetLife Inc., the insurer seeking an exit from banking to limit U.S. regulation, was penalized $3.2 million by the Federal Reserve for lapses tied to the servicing of loans and handling of foreclosures.

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 8, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

Tags: , , , , ,

 
%d bloggers like this: